You are here

Maidenhair Spleenwort

Click the pic!

To aid users of mobile devices as well as those with a mouse or laptop finger pad this site uses a simple image-based menu system. Virtually every picture you see (images and photos) are links to more information arranged in a sort of top-down structure. See an image, click or tap on it to open a new page.

A delicate fern found on walls, bridges and rocky places.


Maidenhair spleenwort: somewhat off the wall

Post date: Friday, 7 February, 2014 - 00:00

Maidenhair spleenwort (Asplenium trichomanes) is a charming little plant with a rather unusual name. Spleenworts are members of the fern family with special structural characteristics. They do not usually grow in the ground like many other plants, instead preferring rocky or wooden substrates. Many spleenworts are found in fairly unique places like crevices in rocks on mountain sides and are quite hard to find but the maidenhair spleenwort is widespread and can be found on walls and rocks virtually anywhere. Bridges and garden walls are the usual places to find them but this one was on the disused platform at Wareham Station. 

They are not difficult to identify as they are small plants, have a typical fern-like appearance, and have a distinctive black central stem off of which the 'leaves' form alternately, left then right. 

I cannot find where the name originates from but presumably spleenworts were considered to be beneficial to the spleen if eaten, this may or may not be true and I do not suggest you try it to see!


The records for this species have been organised into reports, charts, maps and photos. Click a pic below to see the detail:

Sites List Distribution Map Distribution Map Some Charts Some Photographs Original Tweets Relatives Guidance Notes
Common Name Maidenhair Spleenwort
Scientific Name Asplenium trichomanes
Interest Level
Species Family Spleenworts
Preferred Environment
Look for
Additional Identification Notes

This species is often found in these habitats:

Habitat(s) Relationship
BB: Buildings, bridges and walls Associated